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EKURHULENI mayor Ntombi Mekgwe wants softball to return to the area with a vengeance.
She was speaking at the launch of the Gauteng Softball League at Carnival City in Ekurhuleni at the weekend.
The new league is sponsored by Afrisun East Rand Community Trust to the tune of R100000 a year over the next three years.
The sponsorship will go a long way towards reviving the ball game in Ekurhuleni, which once boasted top teams like Katlehong's Mexicans and Katz, Vosloorus Dodgers, Tsakane Marauders and Duduza Heroes.
"I have given sports and recreation officials the task to expedite the process of ensuring that we have enough softball diamonds in the area," Mekgwe said.
"It is very important to have sports facilities here to make sure youngsters stay away from crime and keep busy with different sporting activities and at the same time develop the sport and nurture more talent."
Gauteng Softball Association spokesperson Kgotso Ncholo said: "We really appreciate the executive mayor's commitment as a start for us in bringing the culture of softball back to the townships."